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RoHS-compatible ETX replacement module now available

Posted: 07 Apr 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Alex Mendelsohn?

Board maker Ampro Computers Inc., a supplier of standards-based computer systems and modules, pre-announced a cost-optimized product for commercial-grade embedded systems that are stranded due to a number of non-RoHS Embedded Technology eXtended (ETX) modules that have reached end-of-life status.

RoHS 2002/95/EC, adopted by the European Union, pertains to all imported electronics beginning July 1, 2006. The RoHS Directive restricts the use of lead and other substances that are harmful to the environment.

"In some cases, RoHS is causing price increases in the form of new compliant components or due to the installation of new equipment and assembly processes," noted Joanne Mumola Williams, president and CEO of Ampro. "Plug-compatible ETX module availability is a key issue during the industry's RoHS transition. Complete baseboard re-designs for other form-factors are unacceptable to many OEMs."

Using the new RoHS-compliant Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Geode LX 800 single-chip integrated processor and north bridge, Ampro's ETX 610 module drops into existing ETX baseboard designs.

Keeping you in production, and priced in the $200-range in production volumes, the ETX 610 targets a range of high-volume commercial applications, ranging from building automation to electronic voting machines.

Fan-less systems
The ETX 610 module comes with a 500MHz processor, integrated with 2D graphics, a memory controller, and a PCI bridge. The Geode LX 800 has a low TDP (thermal design power) rating of 3.9W to facilitate fan-less design.

According to the company, double data rate (DDR) small outline dual in-line module (SODIMM) RAM, to 1Gbyte in size, provides cost savings compared to legacy single data-rate memory such as PC133.

The ETX 610 module also contains USB 2.0 ports, EIDE and Serial ATA interfaces for migration, and 10/100Mbit Ethernet connectivity. It packs ACPI power management, PCI bus expansion, and ISA bus expansion for custom circuitry on the ETX baseboard. Low voltage differential signaling flat panel LCDs are also supported.

An ETX 610 QuickStart kit includes drivers and board support packages for Windows XP, Windows XP Embedded and Windows CE 5.0 as well as a full Linux 2.6 distribution (Fedora Core 3).

The RoHS-compliant ETX 610 modules will begin shipping by late May 2006.

- Alex Mendelsohn

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